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    Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives
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Key EI Data No Longer Available

As Heather Scoffield of Canadian Press reports here, Statistics Canada are no longer publishing key EI data because HRSDC have stopped providing it.

Data on the dollar value of EI regular benefits are not published in the monthly Statscan release, but were available each month on CANSIM…  until March of this year.

As reported on Sam Boshra’s Economic Justice blog, the frozen tables are

CANSIM Table 276-0005
Employment Insurance Program (E.I.), benefit payments by province and type of benefit monthly (Dollars), Jan 1943 to Mar 2011

CANSIM Table 276-0015
Employment Insurance Program (E.I.), weeks paid by province and type of benefit monthly (Number), Jan 1943 to Mar 2011

CANSIM Table 276-0016
Employment Insurance Program (E.I.), average weekly payments by province and type of benefit monthly (Dollars), Jan 1942 to Mar 2011

This means that we no longer have any monthly (or annual) data at all on the dollar value of EI benefits – including per beneficiary and by province – for any kind of EI benefit until the annual statistics are published in the EI Monitoring and Assessment Report (assuming we continue to get this.) Those data come with a long delay – the just released 2011 report goes only to the end of fiscal year 2009-10.
Loss of data will make it much more difficult to analyse the impacts of changes to the EI rules as they are implemented.
Statscan says:

“HRSDC provides EI benefit payment data to Statistics Canada on a monthly basis. In March 2011, due to inconsistencies in the allocation of benefit payment data by type of benefit, CANSIM data tables related to benefit payment by type of benefit were suspended. Aggregate totals for benefit payment data were available on demand. As of May 2012, however, these aggregate totals for benefits payment data will not be available until further notice, as data for certain types of benefit payments are not currently provided to Statistics Canada.”

No explanation has been provided by HRSDC.

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Comments

Comment from Travis Fast
Time: May 25, 2012, 9:54 am

Facts rarely speak for themselves, and they are of course up for an endless activity of interpretation, reinterpretation and thus spin. This government seems to be so lazy they do not even want to try to spin the facts: far better to just abolish the facts and rule by fiat.

This is an Imperial, not a democratic government.

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